The viability of Astrology as a business?

Why Astrology?”

This is one question that I get almost always, whenever I climb a stage to pitch or meet someone interesting from the tech space or investors.

So, here’s an explanation of my thoughts on astrology and why I chose to back it up!

Human beings are curious animal. We all want to know about our future. We want to know whether or not we would fair good in a job, whether our marriages would last, whether our investments would be fruitful and so on and so forth. Also, it is a very private affair and most of us don’t really want to show it in public because of the stigma of being labeled as a follower of blind faith or voodoo or something. I don’t really want to get into a debate on Astrology classified as science or pseudo-science or not even a science. That’s a never ending debate and it’s better left avoided.

The point is, nobody wants to get left behind in this super fast and competitive world. No one wants to have doubts and unanswered questions, especially when it has prospects of a better future. It is the fear of missing out (FOMO) that everybody is on a lookout for instant solutions, easy remedies and speedy rewards. Everyone wants to know the genesis for their miseries/downfalls and take right steps to come up as a winner. They want to take informed decisions today for a better tomorrow, and astrology is “The Thing” for that.



Deep dive into Astrology: The conceptual angle.

Astrology is derived from the word “astrologia” meaning “the Science of the Stars”. Astrology consists of a bunch of distinctive systems that are laid upon the fundamental idea of a relationship between happenings in our world and certain kind of astro-phenomena or influence of the stars on us. So, the basic principle that astrology acknowledges is that celestial/heavenly bodies have effects on every earthling. The celestial bodies help provide us with the ability to both organize knowledge and understand the world around us. Their location, as it pertains to one’s birth date, place and time, has a significant impact on one’s life.

It’s a 4000 years old science and is also stated as the “Mother of all sciences”.

Astrology goes way beyond the sun sign columns published in newspapers categorizing close to 7.4 Billion people into just 12 standard categories, while each and every soul is unique and has specific traits! The effect of stars and heavenly bodies is specific to every individual. Astrology is the correlation between stars and their effect on life forms derived through statistical positioning and calculating their effective movements to come up with a holistic chart called kundali decoding the possibilities and evaluating prospects for future.


Astrology as business

Astrology has seen tremendous growth in recent years and is only growing with advent of scientific tools and better understanding of people. Online Astrology is also one of the fastest growing markets (especially in India) growing close to 100% YoY and is expected to grow to 3 billion dollars by 2020 in India alone! 

People, especially youth, are realizing that astrology can come in handy and can really help them shape their future in an organized and informed manner. On the other hand more and more educated and passionate people are taking up astrology as a profession and guiding people through practical, modern and radical consultations.



Today, people more than ever need this age old support system which is solely made in India, in their lives because of the change in socio-economic conditions of our society and increasing uncertainties around the world!

In the coming years, it will expand to new horizons and adapt according to the new challenges of the 21st century.

It’s not too far into the future where astrology is as easy as getting a recharge on your phone! 🙂


– Vaibhav

AskmonkAstrology on the go!

(Cross posted on Entrepreneur:


Jantar Mantar -The Historic Astro Marvel of India!

Located in the heart of Jaipur, the pink city of India, Jantar Mantar was built by Maharaja Jai Singh II and completed on 1734. Jantar derives from Yantra which means instrument while Mantra means calculation.

Etymologically, Jantar Mantar means instrument for calculations.

h_50311636_1                                                         Source: The Washington Post

However, there is more astronomical and astrological significance to it. Jantar Mantar monument is equipped with architectural instruments for measuring astronomical observations and to calculate exact time hence making it more accurate than any other observatory out there!

Maharaja Jai SIngh II was very fond of maths, architecture and a savant astronomer. He built five observatories in New Delhi, Mathura, Jaipur, Ujjain and Varanasi. Jaipur has the largest observatory which also has the world’s largest sundial, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Jantar Mantar is a collection of 19 astronomical instruments, where each instrument deduces certain astronomical implication. Each instrument is made of marbles, stones and brass.

whatsapp-image-2017-02-22-at-12-53-49-pmFig: Narivalaya Yantra

Other than records of astrology stored in the enormous reserves of the pristine Vedic books, Jantar Mantar is an existing proof of 4000 years old science of Vedic Astrology.

For people fascinated with the zodiac signs, there is an arcane astronomical instrument installed in Jantar Mantar known as Rashivalya Yantra. It is a collection of 12 instruments depicting the zodiac signs at different places indicating each one’s unique traits. Each zodiac instrument is determined by their celestial latitude and longitude.

zodiac-signsFig: 12 Actual Zodiac Signs in Jantar Mantar

3ef3c50ebe60c827907f681bc3f10b00Fig: Rashivalya Yantra

The largest instrument in Jantar Mantar is Vrihat Samrat Yantra, also the world’s largest sundial. The height of Samrat Yantra is 27 meters and the base length is 45 meters. As in the past, it was not possible to find exact time thus, the only way to get exact time was to increase the dimension of the scale, which led to the cosmic size of Samrat Yantra. It can give Jaipur’s local time to an accuracy of 2 seconds.

thumb_img_4166_1024                                                                      Fig: Vrihat Samrat Yantra

There is mini version of Vrihat Samrat Yantra known as Laghu Samrat Yantra. The upper edge of the yantra makes an angle of 27 degrees with the horizontal wall which denotes the latitude of Jaipur. The scales are made of marble. It can give Jaipur’s local time to an accuracy of 20 seconds.

whatsapp-image-2017-02-22-at-12-53-31-pm                                          Fig: Calculation of time with Laghu Samrat Yantra

The amazing thing about this medieval marvel is the integration of astronomy and astrology. Till date no one can refute the preciseness of these instruments!

One must visit Jantar Mantar to explore how people used to calculate time when there were neither wristwatch nor home clock. Jantar Mantar is a must visit for the amateurs and aficionado of astronomy. It is definitely a place to explore!

Cheers,                                                                                                                                                                   Askmonk – Astrology on the go!

#PitchOffSeasonIV, Jaipur

Happy to share that Askmonk was among the top 30 startups selected across India from over 2000 applicants for the Tech Portal’s Pitchoff Season VI in Jaipur featuring India’s top investors and stars from TVF -Arunabh Kumar and Sumeet Vyas! 🙂

With our kiosk installed at the majestic Birla Auditorium, most of the delegates and investors were curious to know about the niche market of astrology. People were quite surprised by our stats and how we are making astrology accessible to everyone. With the session of sharing business cards to connecting with potential investors, Pitchoff was an amazing experience.

Here are some moments:

Birla Auditorium


Vaibhav and Kanishk on kiosk


The Exhibitors guide featuring Askmonk.


A trust of 10,000 users!

Extremely euphoric and delighted to share that Askmonk has just crossed 10,000 downloads on Android app store. Our whole team wants to thank all of you wonderful people out there who have trusted in us and made this happen! We promise to give you the best of astrology for a lifetime and beyond.

“Thank you everyone!” 🙂

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Expect the unexpected

Only a few minutes ago I was reading an article on the founder of Art of Living, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar by Alok Kejriwal that said:

“Sometimes, the Universe grants you what you want, almost instantly!”

How very true! Every word of this line is super important. And it happened to us today!

In a few days Donald Trump is going to be the president of the free world – ala, United States of America. We all understand how important this event is going to be along the timeline of our civilization. The whole world is watching, both anxious about and excited for, the new incoming president.

A perfect setting for our astrologer think-tank to do a kundali.

This seemed like a great opportunity for Askmonk to sit together — developers, designers, editors and of course astrologers to come up with a viral kundali on Donald Trump. It must be unique we thought.

A unique presentation of his kundali (our first ever) along with a hardcore synopsis of what his stars have to say, his influences and impact on socio-economic relationship between India  and US — sounded like goosebumps to me!

We wanted it to be cool so decided on combining technology (Nodejs & Bookiza framework) and age-old science of astrology together to produce the following ‘Askmonk’s Viral Kundali’ of Mr. Trump using only vedic principles:

Once it was ready we shared it in our friend circle, both in India and the US and thus started a social loop we could have only dreamed for. We ended up on the front page of The Economic Times today, and I’m only deeply touched and euphoric to confirm that:


“Sometimes, the Universe grants you what you want, almost instantly!” 🙂


Askmonk – Astrology on the go!

(Cross posted on The Rodinhoods

Lunar Calendar 2017

Happy new year 2017

This is Askmonk’s Lunar calendar 2017. If you’r an astrologer you might want to use the phases of Moon and if you’r not just learn about the phases of Moon 🙂

Lunar calendar plays an important role from determining the date of festivals such as Holi, Diwali etc. to the Super Moon phenomenon.